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New to RTI

New to RTI

Our school is supposedly implementing RTI next year.  Our schedule is such that I will have 2 "free" periods a day in which to implement RTI strategies with sixth and seventh graders.  I have basically been given no training.  I'm a seventh grade English teacher by trade.  Where do I start?  I keep reading WHY the program works, but not much in HOW to actually implement it or what it really LOOKS like.

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Re: New to RTI


I feel for you, but you're not alone. I've probably spoken to hundreds of people in your shoes.

You've come to the right place, but sadly, there is a reluctance for our colleagues to use online resources for assistance.  I'm glad you're open to freely sharing.

I think your first step is to determine how committed your administration is to RtI.  I often find that my fellow principals will assign the RtI work to someone.  They do so for good reasons, but they miss the point that RtI requires systemic thinking and systems maintenance.  Delegating it makes this work pretty hard.

To get a perspective on the systems approach, check out these two sites:




They both provide the big picture that provides the nest that is needed for RtI to work.

After that, you might want to go to the Illinois Aspire site and find their RtI self inventory to get a starting point.

I recommend that you survey your fellow teachers and school data to find out where you are the weakest and where you might already have an intervention in the works.  This will enable you to start with the greatest need and be able to have an early and fast success.

Let us know how this works out.


Charles Johns
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Re: New to RTI

I've looked at the links you mentioned, and I know the same little bit that I knew before.  My question is what will it look like for me?  I understand that our model will use 3 tiers and that students will be assessed regularly to determine the appropriate tier for their skill levels.  What I don't understand is what I will be doing to help them.  I have some ideas of what I could do, but I'm not sure what I will be doing.  I'm sure it depends on what the assessments show, but do I as the "RTI person" work with kids in the classroom on work they're already doing in class like a tutor?  Do I pull-out the kids and work on certain skills that apply across the board?  If I do pull-out, what happens when the kids I pull miss classwork in the general classroom?  Do I try a variety of strategies in and out of the classroom?  I understand the three tiers; it just seems to be a new name for what most good teachers understand about kids, but what do I do once we know what kids are in which tier to begin?  Am I, the English teacher, going to deal with Math?  That's ok with me because my math skills are relatively good, but what about the "RTI person" who maybe doesn't know much of a certain subject?  Our school is also building in 30-45 minutes of "RTI Time" for all teachers.  What do we do then?  I feel like what I've heard so far about the tiers and the assessment is just the organizational framework, and that the foundation of our instructional strategies is absent.  What am I missing?  (I'm middle school, by the way.)

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